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MDSA02H3 (54)
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Chapter 1-7

MDSA02 text notes ch. 1-7

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Media Studies
Ted Petit

Media Midterm textbook notes Introduction: Flash mobs: like a flash flood it suddenly appears in force. Rage goes viral and angry people cluster Mass and personal: Mediated communication can be defined as both mass and personal communication using a physical medium. Mediated communication using external means to carry information, has been part of human life since the start of recorded history. Mediated communication has a push-pull affect, pushing us apart but keeping us tethered to family and friends, to home and sometimes workplace. Chapter 1 – Writing -literate communities always overrule illiterate communities -advs of writing: >stores much of mankind‘s transmittable knowledge >knowledge no longer needs to be limited to memory >can travel across any distance >can travel from gen to gen w/out change >immensely powerful tool – or weapon Oral Cultures -restricts itself upon 2-way restricted info -must have a listener present, but to communicate by writing there doesn‘t have to be a listener present, is imagined and separated from the writer -mems of oral cultures have better tradition of memory than us who memorize from written text -knowledge is passed down from gen to gen from parents and storytellersàcan‘t tell all that writing has stored The Beginnings -symbols began in cave paintings -writing may have begun as physical tokens repping #‘s and goods in 8000 BCE -as settled communities grew need for records expanded so about 5000 years ago math was born, began to use tokens put in clay envelopes to rep their quantity, eventually clay envelop itself was flattened into a tablet -then first logograms emerged, written symbols that rep meanings The Role of Priests -writing became sacred -priests guarded skills of writing b/c they were aware that is conferred authority -priests began to select youth (usually boys) and teach writing in temple schools -writing became central to society as trade grew more complex Alphabets -first alphabet emerged 4000 years ago from managers at copper and turquoise mines in Sinai Desert The Greeks -as alphabet spread over centuries local communities changed and improved it to fit their own spoken lang -Greeks added vowels and democratized the alphabet by simplifying it -Greeks used basic blocks of communication media to move the world in new directions -they wrote down stories and poems that had before only been repeated orally for four centuries prioràallowed tellers of tales to separate themselves from their memories, therefore also forgetting them -this was followed by a growth of writing down intellect, artistic, and political ideas -writing allowed for ppl to write down their life story/thoughts, satisfying human desire to be remembered Greek Accomplishments -greek scholars wrote about philosophy, metaphysics, history, science, and politics -they wrote plays -writing helped greeks to govern themselves -writing was gateway to scientific method, to logic and analysis -began to spread writing across Mediterranean - became teachers, source of much of Mediterranean world‘s culture, knowledge, and edu -thanks to Greeks first daily news reports on waxed wood tablets were posted in Roman Forum to let citizens know what the Senate was doing -by 4th century CE city of Rome had at least 28 libraries w/ 20,000 or more papyrus rolls each The Middle Ages -learning and communication suffered following the fall of the Roman Empire -when uni‘s arose in Europe in 12th century, Latin was the lang used -as Europe advanced reading at some level became means of social advancement -elite‘s guarded literarcy barriers from commoners, convinced they only needed to know intelligence in books A Growing Literacy -as societies became more complex need for writing grew -although there was little formal contact btwn some cultures they took similar approaches in devoping writing - everywhere writing emerged as tool of the class of priests and some aristocrats -everywhere it marked authority and conferred power and was rationed Chinese and Korean Writing -chinese writing made up of ideographs (the reps of imgs) -very complex lang -most Koreans remained illiterate, commoners entitled to read, but schools restricted for only kids of aristocracy, making edu limited American Literacy -by start of American revolution 90% of New Englanders were literate -few girls were taught how to read, boys could go on if money could be found and blacks had almost no chance -some villages against eduàwould pay a fine to gov to ensure schools wouldn‘t be built Extending Literacy in Modern Times -by start of 19th century most men and women in northeastern US were literate -by middle of century, 9 out of 10 white ppl throughout US had a basic reading skill -industrial revolution gave rise in literacy among middle and working class - digital gapà gap btwn pop‘s that have access to computers and the internet and the ones who don‘t Chapter 2 – Printing -enabled mass edu -began mass communication A Chinese Invention -printing set basis for democracy in all nations that now enjoy it, but printing also exists in dictatorships -China practised sort of printingàblock printing -Gutenberg created printing system -after this Uni‘s established, mail services began Early Printing in Europe -before Gutenberg began printing in mid-15th century, most books in Europe written in latin -most ppl couldn‘t read, usually priests could Printing and Literacy -mark of modern age distinguishing it from middle age is literacy -the more printing the more literacy, the more literacy the more printing -demand for books increased as schools multiplied and vernacular literacy rose -merchant class(middle class) learned how to read The Reformation -before Gutenberg books were costly and church controlled nearly all edu -in 16th century Martin Luther used print and created the Protestant Reformation Martin Luther -translated New Testament into German vernacular so that ordinary ppl could understand it for themselves, followed by Old Testament translation -by end of 16th century bible translated into # of vernacular langs The Renaissance - Printing and Langs -created sense of nationalism b/c it caused ppl to separate themselves from those who didn‘t know some lang as them Printing and Freedom -allowed for first amendments U.S. constitution to be madeàthe freedom of the press -after this followed years of US newspaper attacks against opposing politicians The Industrial Revolution -inventions in paper production, telegraph, and photography happened reinforcing newspaper as primary tool of public use to learn of current events and entertainment and edu -by end of century telephone, phonograph, typewriter, radio‘s dots and dashes, and motion pictures afforded new means of communication, along with compulsory free edu, public libraries, mass ads, cheap books and periodicals The Typewriter -one goal for it was to emboss letters on paper so blind could read -other goal was so that information could be on paper quicker (writing took too long) -qwerty keyboard design was created for mechanical typewriters to minimize jamming the keys at the print point by positioning common letters ―a‖ and ―s‖ under the weak fingers and the uncommon letters ―j‖ under the strongest finger, an arrangement that also separated most frequent pairs of letters so that they stuck by alternate hands -qwerty pointless to us now but still use it b/c previous gen does Newspapers -first published in Europe in early 17th century -for next 200 years mainly published to promote political viewpoint or to provide business info -in 1833 ―penny press‖ started in NY which was filled w/ gossip, sensation and local news >was mainly supported by mass advertising >for ppl coming out of school who wanted to read but not about politics/business -caused newspapers to grow fast w/ ads -newspapers became about local news, sensational news, stories of adventure/exotic, and politics that may impact reader‘s lifeàevolved to modern newspaper - comics, photographs, and advice columns became apparent in newspapers -b/c of modern times newspaper not popular among youth Magazines -first appeared in England in 18th century as a weekly periodical -many didn‘t last Do You Know Why We Publish? -19th century magazines became more popular, supported by ads -Curtis published ―The Ladies Home Journals‖ and wanted to make money off of ads, said that the actual goal of the magazine wasn‘t to give women articles to read, but instead give advertisers the chance to convince women to buy their product -popular taste magazines became popular in late 1800s/early 1900s -by 20th century thousands of diff magazines -readers usually prefer magazines that address their preferences Books -before 18th century few books for kids were published -only had bible to read a few moral fables -morality common theme in books in 19th century Novels -England, France, Germany and Russia devoped traditions of literary fiction in 18th/19th centuries -popular novels put in chapter by chapter in magazines, usually ended on note of suspense to get reader to buy next issue -book clubs devoped in 1920s by a way to sell books to middle class readers (b/c they would buy in large #s and be able to sell to readers at better prices) Changing Technology -google now places book online -things like ipad and ebooks have caused change in way books are presented, but are still sold but at lower prices -can also find books for free online b/c of this Censorship -exists throughout books, ex: some ppl believe shouldn‘t teach evolution w/out teaching creationism -ppl arguing about what is/isn‘t appropriate for children‘s textbooks Avoiding Topics -abortion, death, disease, disrespectful and criminal beh, witchcraft, ppl‘s height and weight, religion, etc are all things avoided in modern textbooks -is on-going battle - this is controlling what kids are allowed to learn Bomb Thrown into medieval World Anthony Comstock Chapter 3 – Mail -mail delivery was the first measure of civilization Ancient Posts -gov postal services in many countries originally only meant for gov use The Romans -the large roman postal system known as the cursus publicus stretched across the Empire from Egypt to Britianàwas so fast no postal or matched its speed for nearly 1900 years - when roman empire collapsed their postal org did too Medieval and Postal Services -by 12th century monasteries established regular links w/ distant brethren -the increase in uni, expansion of towns and needs of trade increased amount of written communication -in 13th century at uni of paris the foundation of a national postal service began in France under umbrella of the Roman Catholic Churchàmarked the renewal of civilization in Middle Ages -in 14th and 15th centuries the Italian Della Torres fam ran private courier service that over years spread across Europe -by 1500 letter routes were open to public across Europe -in 15th century France, Louis XI revived national postal service strictly for gov use, King declared anyone who tried to inject private letters was doomed to hell -in 1600 Spanish ruler legalized idea to charge for private letters (was practised before this) -in 1627, most of british gov postal service and private operations merged into a single State Post -most letters didn‘t use envelopes prior to postage stamps, instead folded so writing was on inside and on the blank side wrote address and payment The New World -1693 post office set up in tavern and home of Richard Fairbanks of Boston - was followed by European practise of using taverns and coffeehouses for mail drops -Fairbank was New World‘s first postmaster, charged 1 penny per letter -first private post boxes were row of old boots nailed against wall at a river steamboat landing w/ a settler‘s name -Benjamin Franklin appointed postmaster of Philadelphia in 1737, by 1753 was promoted crown to postmaster general for all of NA colonies, improved service and showed first surplus, established roads from Can to Flo and set up schedule btwn colonies in England Serving the Revolution -wanted to tax postal service, help lead to American Revolution, one of arguments for freedom of the press in the first amendment -colonists ignored postal laws and sent letters outside the official mails, depriving Crown of income, by end of 1775 lack of letters caused royal postal service to shut down -Franklin turned postmasters into publishers agents by getting them to collect postage and subscription fees, his policies made American colon
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